Positive Education

Positive Education

At Newcastle Grammar School we have deliberately chosen Positive Education. Our approach places wellbeing firmly at the heart of everything we do and brings together best practice teaching and learning with learning the skills and mindsets to flourish. Central to the lens through which we see the Positive Education experience are strengths. The language of strengths permeates our entire school community and we know that Character Strengths are the Pathway to PERMA. 

Positive Education at Newcastle Grammar School offers a range of empirically validated approaches from the field of positive psychology which are delivered through interventions, programs and practices to promote the wellbeing of our students, staff and wider community. As a Visible Wellbeing Partner School, we appreciate the importance of tuning in to wellbeing and making something that is invisible seen, heard and felt. In addition to promoting the positive psychology principles of growth mindset, gratitude, resilience, grit, deliberate practice, flow and mindfulness we also believe in the importance of wellbeing literacy as a general capability.

Together, we can all RISE to be the best we can be.

Visible Wellbeing

Visible Wellbeing

Visible Wellbeing is a whole school evidence-based approach to developing and sustaining student, staff and community wellbeing. Under the guidance of Professor Lea Waters PhD, University of Melbourne, the Visible Wellbeing approach offers a language, lens and framework for flourishing.




Artist’s Statement: JASMIN ZHOU (Year 12 2019) 

At Newcastle Grammar School we have decided to use the motif of a kaleidoscope to symbolise our Visible Wellbeing journey. The kaleidoscope captures the visible, audible, and tangible message of SEE, HEAR, FEEL by representing wellbeing as a myriad of delicately arranged coloured surfaces from which light can bounce and an infinity of patterns is created. 

Part of the journey of Visible Wellbeing is to recognise the diversity of experiences, visions and colours that each person offers and to also embrace our own; and like the turns that we take in life, each twist of the kaleidoscope produces an image that is powerful, beautiful and unique. 

The kaleidoscope offers a wellbeing lens that takes something that exists inside of us that can’t be seen and brilliantly radiates it to the world. The aim is to encourage everyone to tune in to their own wellbeing and make it seen, heard and felt while also engaging in a shared human experience and appreciating the wellbeing of others. 

It has been my honour to harness my strengths in the conceptualisation of Visible Wellbeing through the creative process for Newcastle Grammar School and I wish everyone well in their own journeys towards making wellbeing visible.


Character Strengths

Character Strengths

We all have strengths. 

Strengths are the positive qualities and attributes that we find energising, choose often and perform well. Strengths research asks the questions; 

What is right with you? 

Who are you at your best? 

What would change if you brought your best self to each situation? 

Knowing our signature strengths and skillfully applying them can have a significant positive impact on our lives. Research indicates that using our signature strengths can help us buffer against, manage and overcome challenges, improve our  relationships and enhance our wellbeing.

Through the Positive Education programme at Newcastle Grammar School, all students will be given the opportunity to discover their signature strengths from the 24 character strengths through the Values in Action (VIA) Institute.


2019 School Captains 

What a start to a new decade! Every year is a new chapter in the book that is our school journey, but the lead up to this one has been one of the most exciting, challenging and rewarding adventures that we have had the fortune to take. For the last several years, we have been supported, encouraged, unified and inspired by the community that is Newcastle Grammar School, and we feel very honoured to be able to return, in our own way, a small token of our appreciation. 

Term One’s fast paced nature has meant that all of Year 12 has been kept on our toes since the first bell. The Student Leaders spent the Orientation Day meeting new students, where we were able to speak about our own school journeys and fond memories of our first days at NGS. This excitement, nerves and energy for the new school year were quickly funnelled into our first assemblies, where we were thrilled to announce our Bushfire Relief Fundraiser Week, which aimed to raise important funds for the NSW Rural Fire Service and Port Stephens Koala Sanctuary, who are supporting people and wildlife that were devastated by Australia’s catastrophic bushfire crisis. The Bushfire Fundraiser in Week 4 was a tremendous success, with milkshakes being sold throughout the week, and pizza being available on Friday. The day’s theme of personal heroes and inspirational individuals was also a great way for students to think about the role models and people in their own lives who they look up to and admire. 

Our first meeting with our new leadership team quickly turned into the greatly anticipated launch of the Round Square Committee, a revitalised reincarnation of the Student Representative Council, which not only aims to give students a voice in the school, but provides an incredible breadth of opportunities for students locally, nationally and internationally. With representatives for each year group being involved, we are thrilled to see the impact that they will have on our community. 

We are also looking forward to our upcoming participation in the annual Clean Up Australia Day Event in March, at Nobby’s Foreshore Park. This volunteer activity is a great way for students to “Feel Good by Doing Good” in our local area. 

It has been an absolute privilege so far to be your School Captains, and we are thrilled that we will be able to express our appreciation and dedication for our wonderful school throughout the year. We look forward to ensuring that the 2020 Year 12 Cohort’s legacy is one that aligns with our school values of respect, integrity, service and excellence. We cannot wait to see what this year brings – we know it is going to be an incredible one!  

Evgenia Petrelis and Jadon Routley

School Captains

Park Campus
Hill Campus
Academic Success
Student Wellbeing
Service Learning
Student Centred Learning
P: Positive Emotions
Habits of Mind
Habits of Wellbeing
E: Engagement
Habits of Mind
Habits of Wellbeing
R: Relationships
Habits of Mind
Habits of Wellbeing
M: Meaning & Purpose
Habits of Mind
Habits of Wellbeing
A: Accomplishment
Habits of Mind
Habits of Wellbeing
R: Resilience
Habits of Mind
Habits of Wellbeing
P: Positive Emotions — Habits of Mind

Finding humour.

Responding with awe and wonderment.

P: Positive Emotions — Habits of Wellbeing

Broaden and Build.

Positivity (Losada) ratio.

Expressing joy, gratitude, hope and inspiration.

E: Engagement — Habits of Mind

Applying past knowledge to new situations.

Gathering data through all the senses.

Thinking and communicating with precision and purpose.

E: Engagement — Habits of Wellbeing

Deliberate Practice.


Experiences of interest, curiosity, absorption and passion.


R: Relationships — Habits of Mind

Listening to others with Understanding and Empathy.

Thinking interdependently.

R: Relationships — Habits of Wellbeing

Active-constructive responding.

Building and maintaining positive and productive relationships.

Embracing diversity.

M: Meaning & Purpose — Habits of Mind

Metacognition - Thinking about my thinking.

Questioning and posing problems.

Creating, Imagining and Innovating.

M: Meaning & Purpose — Habits of Wellbeing

Character Strengths and Signature Strengths.

Goal setting - WOOP.

Feeling Good and Doing Good.

A: Accomplishment — Habits of Mind


Thinking Flexibly

Striving for Accuracy

A: Accomplishment — Habits of Wellbeing

Grit - Passion and Perseverance for long term goals.

Deliberate Practice.

Developing a Growth Mindset.

R: Resilience — Habits of Mind

Taking responsible risks.

Managing impulsivity.

R: Resilience — Habits of Wellbeing

Developing an Optimistic Explanatory Style.

Developing and experiencing mindfulness.